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Urban farm in Hunters Point to host large harvest festival fundraiser with food, games, live music on Saturday

Smiling Hogshead Ranch (photo via Smiling Hogshead Ranch on Facebook)

Oct. 18, 2017 by Nathaly Pesantez

An urban farm situated in Hunters Point will be hosting its second annual harvest festival, a fundraising event featuring food, live shows, carnival games, and a “silent auction”, on Saturday.

The Smiling Hogshead Ranch’s event will take place on its one acre farm on Oct. 21 from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. at 25-30 Skillman Ave., where a lineup of community and environmental groups will be present, along with performances from seven musical acts. Attendees can also take part in a medley of family games and activities, including face painting, a photo booth, and football toss at the festival.

Community, health, and environmentally-focused groups with tables include; Sunnyside Shines, which will hand out welcome kits and sunflower seed packets; the Fortune Society, which works toward prison-reform, and Vokashi Kitchen Waste Solution, a group that will teach a demo on composting methods. In total, 20 tables will be present at the event.

A variety of foods will be available at the event, including Dalia’s Tacos, donuts from Astoria’s Krispy Elite to be used for a donut bobbing game, pastries from Tom Cat’s Bakery and the 51st Bakery and Cafe, and honey samples from the Honey Bee Conservancy.

Musical acts ranging from Os Cavelitos, a samba band, Aya Aziz, an Arabian folk, pop and R&B trio will play at the Harvest Festival, with the Funkrust Brass Band leading a sunset procession toward the end of the festival.

A “silent” auction will be held at the event, with items including a bike donated by Nomad Cycle, tickets to see the Blue Man Group, and more. The auction works by a list at the event where attendees can see bids on an item and write in a higher bid until 5:30 p.m., when the auction closes.

The harvest festival is free and open to the public, but food and drinks, along with carnival games and activities, will be ticketed. Attendees will pay $1.00 for each ticket, with food items and activities going no more than 5 tickets.

All funds raised at the event will go toward the Smiling Hogshead Ranch, which will use the funds towards yearly operational costs, according to Rose Moon, a board member for the garden. Moon and the Smiling Hogshead Ranch raised $1,250 last year, and hope to reach $5,000 at the festival.

The Smiling Hogshead Ranch, the name which came about after a pig skeleton was found on the roughly half-acre site, came about in 2011 after a group of 10 to 15 guerrilla farmers began planting fruit and vegetables on the abandoned site owned by the MTA. The group successfully negotiated a lease agreement with the MTA to continue to use the plot as a garden in 2014.

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Smiling Hogs Head Ranch is potentially very cool. They have a couple people who are doing good. Unfortunately, there are a handful of “too cool for school” grumps who just think that this is their personal club and are very judgmental and uninviting. If you have tattoos (DMT or whatever your ridiculous name is), “work” as an “artist”, and hate the “new yuppies” in LIC then you will fit right in. just don’t step on one of their “plants” by accident.


More proof that DumBlasio is the in pocket of Big Pumpkins. We don’t have enough affordable housing here and these HIPSTERS are using all this space for a FARM?! I can get vegetables at the grocery store!


Indeed there should be much more affordable housing but THIS particular piece of land is not THE obstacle that stands between YOU or ANYONE in particular and affordable housing.


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